Every profession imposes the required Code of Ethics to guide practitioners in their conduct of their business, real estate service practice not exempted. The Real Estate Service Act (RESA) by virtue of Republic Act No. 9646 mandates the Professional Regulatory Board of the Real Estate Service (PRB-RES) to adopt and promulgate a National Code of Ethics and Responsibilities for Real Estate Service Practice, subject to the approval of the Professional Regulation Commission (PRC).
The first part delves on the Scope and Purview of the Code, then the General Provisions and Declaration of Principles and lastly the Professional Rules of Conduct and Practice. For this initial discourse, we shall tackle the first part on Scope and Purview and on the General Provisions and Declaration of Principles.
The main framework of the Code has something to do with the nobility of the profession which states, “The Real Estate Service Practice is an honorable profession, a calling to strive for excellence, a dignified occupation that is dedicated to the cultivation, building, promotion, development, wealth generation and conservation of land.” It further focuses on its various commitments and concerns, “The Real Estate Service Practice is committed to rural and urban real properties, care for the environment, concern for its ecological balance, and professional manages in a sustainable manner the wise utilization of natural resources, the land, including improvements and rights and interest appurtenant thereto, for the benefit, welfare and enjoyment of the Filipino people.”
The final phase of the Code’s framework concerns the expected observance of the high moral and professional requirements of the profession, to quote, “As such, those engaged therein, both local and privileged foreign practitioners as well as professionals in the private and public sectors are bound by a code of conduct, morals, and values in the performance of their rights, duties and obligations towards society, the government, co-practitioners and to the people they serve for the benefit of the common good.”
Scope and Purview
1. Types of professional practice – the Real Estate Service Practice shall embrace and include all “natural” and “juridical” persons who are performing any act of engaging in the practice of real estate service and shall be committed to the rules and guidelines of business ethics and corporate governance.
2. Licensure requirements – the practice of real estate service requires licensure by the Professional Regulation Commission (PRC) and Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), for natural and juridical persons, respectively.
3. Licensure in the government practice – the RESA requires the public sector more particularly the Assessors (or government appraisers) and such other practitioners as the PRC may now or hereafter license pursuant to any law, rule or regulation that may be promulgated by the government.
General Provisions and Declaration of Principles
1. Compliance requirements – all practitioners shall abide by, commit and comply with all the laws, standards, decrees, orders, and rules and regulations enacted or promulgated by the duly constituted government authorities.
2. High ethical and moral standards – the practitioners shall observe at all times objective moral standards in the practice of real estate service with good governance in relation with the client/s and the community and in service to the nation and the Filipino people.
3. Adequate professional competence – a real estate service practitioner is required to have adequate education, value formation, knowledge, competence and expertise in real estate service.
4. Development of professional practice – the designated APO (Accredited Professional Organization) and PRB-RES shall develop and nurture through proper and effective regulation and supervision a corps of technically competent, responsible and respected professional real estate practitioners whose standards of practice and service shall be globally competitive and will promote the growth of the real estate industry.
5. Growth of Professional Relationships – the spirit of unity, harmony, camaraderie, cooperation and professional relationship among the practitioners is essential and shall be promoted under the principle of subsidiary.
6. The Golden Rule – “Treat others as you like them to treat you” shall be observed in all the dealings and relation of the practitioners with clients, follow practitioners, the organization to which they belong and the general public.
7. Oath – the practitioner shall be bound to practice real estate service in an exemplary manner with the highest interest of the client and public foremost in his mind.